Reports Show Need For More Focus On Skills And Training


Two reports have been released recently by the Mitchell Institute on the most efficient and equitable methods for funding the vocational education and training sector.


These reports come in the middle of a very important public and parliamentary debate about the persistent reports of shonky and unethical behaviour in the sector.  Media reports and submissions to parliamentary inquiries tell appalling stories of people left with very large debts and very poor quality training that industry is saying it doesn’t trust or value.  Even worse, many of these students don’t complete, or even start, their training yet they are stuck with the debt.


Labor has announced policy to provide guaranteed funding to TAFE because we believe that a strong and dominant public provider is one of the best guarantees of quality, equity and affordability. 


Although there is concern that some states have dramatically increased TAFE course costs they still provide a benchmark to judge private provider’s charges.  TAFE also sets quality benchmarks and has a broader community responsibility to ensure Australians can access training regardless of where they live or what challenges they are managing.


“As the bi-partisan report of the House of Representatives made it clear that TAFE is a “national asset” and we are determined to ensure it stays as that”, Sharon Bird said.


“Over a million Australians every year participate in skills training and they must be sure it is both quality and value for money.  These reports are welcome in the debate and reaffirm the importance of understanding any funding models impact on choice and quality.”


Labor is the party of skills, training and apprenticeships and will remain committed to providing a quality TAFE system and vocational education sector.


See Sharon Bird’s full blog here.